From working for the Met police force, to performing on live television and giving evidence at the Leveson Inquiry, presenter Jacqui Hames knows how to cope with pressure, but she says her world was turned upside down when she suddenly lost her hearing. The life of the former Crimewatch presenter took a tough and unexpected turn about two years ago when her hearing became permanently impaired. Read on to learn about her hearing loss and journey to how she overcame it.
Following a quick referral from her GP, Jacqui found solace in the offices of Selma Becker at Help in Hearing. Through consultations in the Farnham Common clinic they were able to agree on the perfect Phonak hearing aid for her.
“I was quite fortunate to get help quite quickly and given a hearing aid which works brilliantly for me. Some people see it as a handicap but it doesn’t have to be seen that way, you don’t look at people who wear reading glasses differently and I want people to realise by seeking help you will better your life.”
After quickly embarking on her long journey with hearing aids, Jacqui believes there is no need for others to suffer in silence:
“People don’t have to retreat into a silent world, a lot of people do cut down on their social lives and they find difficulties with work because they can’t engage with people in the same way. But communication is the building blocks of our lives and if that is impaired you need to do something about it, and it is simple to do.”
“There is an emotional impact of being given the news too, which I think quite a lot of people underestimate. I noticed I was really struggling to hold conversations and was finding social situations really difficult. Places like restaurants where there is a lot of peripheral noise and soft furnishings are particularly difficult and at first it can be quite daunting and worrying, but people should not be scared to step forward and get some help.”
Watch a 30 second interview with Jacqui talking about how she overcame hearing loss.
Jacqui, who appeared on the BBC’s Crimewatch for 16 years from 1990, was formerly a Metropolitan Police detective and was most recently under the spotlight again when she took to the stand in the Leveson Inquiry. Experts say the tasks which most people take for granted can become a hardship for people with hearing difficulties but life is back to normal for Jacqui who can even use her hearing aid to stream music and talk on the phone.
Jacqui continues, “The technology is extraordinary – if you like a gadget get yourself a hearing aid! You can do so many things, I can stream music and can engage in telephone calls quite easily using my hearing aid, people use headphones all the time and that is effectively what I am doing. Since the hearing loss, I think I became so much more aware of the world around me.
If you are struggling with your hearing or know someone that is having problems and might need some help, book a confidential appointment with Selma or Kevin in our Farnham Common or Marlow clinics – just click here to book an appointment.